May 9, 2019 - The Oak Park Fire Department will be testing hydrants starting May 13 and continuing into early June across the entire Village, a routine procedure to ensure proper operations of these vital emergency response devices.
Crews will be out each workday inspecting, flushing and measuring flow rates on all 1,240 fire hydrants in the Village. The inspections also will make sure all hydrants are accessible and not damaged in any way.
Residents on the same water line may notice cloudy water the first time a tap is opened after a nearby test. Officials say any cloudiness in the water should clear up if the tap is allowed to run for a few minutes.
The test entails attaching a short hose with a diverter to the hydrant. The hose and diverter help make sure the rush of water from the hydrant goes into the street and does not damage any nearby landscaping.
A gauge attached to the hydrant provides water flow data that is recorded and compared to data from the same hydrant compiled over the previous five years. The comparison can help identify any changes in pressure that could indicate a problem with the water supply system that needs to be investigated, according to Fire Department officials.
For more information on the hydrant testing, call 708.358.5600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fun Fact: The term fire plug comes from the days when water mains were made of wood. Firefighters would dig down to the main and drill a hole to access the water. When the fire was out they would insert a wooden plug into the main. The next time they had a fire in the area they would just remove the fire plug.